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Joules expects new lockdown to hit sales by GBP14-18mln


Joules Group PLC (LON:JOUL) said it expects the new restrictions to hit group revenues by GBP14-18mln if they were to continue through to April 1.

However, performance in the year to May 30 should be protected by better-than-expected sales and profits in the last seven months, strong momentum of digital sales and cost-cutting initiatives such as head office costs and lease renegotiations.

READ: Joules expects interim profits to drop despite e-commerce growth

In the seven weeks to January 3, total revenue through the fashion designer’s own-branded retail channels was flat.

Online sales soared 66% thanks to traffic growth and improved conversion rates, with the active customer base continuing to grow and reaching 1.5mln people at the end of the period.

Store sales plummeted 58% due to enforced closures of non-essential retail and, when they were allowed to trade, revenue was 23% lower when compared to the corresponding prior year periods, reflecting lower overall footfall trends.

As of January 3, the AIM-listed firm had net cash of GBP13mln and total liquidity headroom of GBP63mln.

House broker Liberum cut underlying earnings (EBITDA) expectations to GBP11mln from GBP13mln and sales forecasts to GBP184mln from GBP190mln for the full year.

Analysts said Joules’ “clear resilience” is due to a product offer that continues to resonate with consumers, continual growth in the active customer base, and “a truly multi-channel model, that has been bolstered by timely investment into systems and infrastructure”.

Shares rose 1% to 183.4p on Thursday at the opening bell.

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